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Borderless Opportunities for Art with ATA Carnets

Friday, March 8, 2024

Exporting as a Creative Professional with Boomerang Carnets

Have you ever dreamt of exhibiting your sculptures in the exciting contemporary art scene of Mexico City?  Or wanted to enter your glass piece in a prestigious juried show in Paris?  Or yearned to ship your multi-media immersive installation to wow audiences in Japan?  You can! 

The allure of international exposure is an undeniable and necessary component to any artist’s career.  Navigating the complexities of cross-border customs regulations can feel like an insurmountable hurdle.  There is a solution that suits the needs of artists like you—the ATA Carnet.  The ATA Carnet can assist with temporary exportation of your work easily and save you money on costly import taxes.

The ATA Carnet is an internationally accepted customs document for temporarily exported merchandise or goods.  It allows cross border movement of those goods import-duty and -tax free into 87+ carnet countries and territories for up to a year.  The ATA Carnet is known as the Merchandise Passport for boomerang freight® and ideal for professional equipment, goods, or commercial samples moving in and out of countries.  Temporary export of your artwork is a fundamental aspect of every artist's journey.  Whether you're collaborating with gallery owners, engaging exhibitors, or presenting your work to museum curators, the ability to seamlessly transport your creations across borders is indispensable.

Exporting as a Creative Professional

Boomerang carnets® was recently asked to speak at the Center on Contemporary Art (CoCA) in Seattle, Washington to address the very real concerns of artists and gallery owners with a presentation entitled, “Exporting as a Creative Professional.”  The impetus of the invitation stemmed from the difficulties a Canadian artist experienced trying to cross the border to exhibit at CoCA. She found herself held up at Customs in the evening hours with 22 art pieces in tow.  

Boomerang Carnets Customer Service Available 24/7—Saves the Day!

The distressed artist was referred by the Customs Officer to call boomerang carnets and she called our Carnet HelpLine® in desperation, seeking advice on entering the U.S. with her artwork.  Curt E.H. Wilson, President & CEO, boomerang carnets, received her call:

"I talked her off the ledge and, through the process of the call, I informed her of her options on valuing her goods and the benefits of a Carnet.  I guided her through the process of applying for a Canadian Carnet instead of a Customs Bond because that was to her best advantage.  She successfully entered the U.S. and gained valuable experience navigating temporary exports.  She was very grateful for the assistance.  One of the things that I pride our company on is to not take advantage of exporters.  They are new to the system.  They are very vulnerable and that’s one of the things I pride myself on—as well as the people that work with us—is to help out.  If there is an expense that we have incurred, so be it.  Advice to me is always the best way to get people to use more Carnets and see their value.  She was a happy camper.  She got in on time to exhibit her artwork.  Now she has some knowledge about how to move her goods around and get more visibility for it and that is exactly what the Carnet is used for, and that is a feel-good story for us.”

The predicament the Canadian artist found herself in is not uncommon.  Proper documentation suitable for the seamless temporary exportation of your goods, merchandise, or in this case, artwork, is a crucial consideration before entering the international arena.  Boomerang carnets, with our nearly 40 years of operation in the ATA Carnet business, and with a presence in both the U.S. and U.K., has assisted many customers and indeed many artists.  

It Matters Where You Get Your Carnet—Take Your Art Abroad and Grow

Boomerang carnets provides ATA Carnets for a wide range of customers in the visual arts from solo artists to large organizations.  Paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, sculptures, installations, and mixed media art often go on a carnet for international exhibitions, fairs, or appraisals.  Artists also use ATA Carnets for tools and equipment taken overseas for the creation of a new piece.  Some creative Boomerang customers are:  

  • an individual artist who creates whimsical sculptures from things found in nature
  • galleries representing groups of artists working in various medium, and one specializing in installations
  • arts organizations of varied sorts including one of the largest visual arts Trusts in the world
  • photographers who take expensive cameras and equipment to many parts of the globe to capture world events, weddings, architecture, and nature
  • a sculptor who needed to enter Mexico from the U.S. with sculptures that originated in the EU.

The Boomerang Benefit 

Boomerang carnets has offices in both the U.S. and U.K.  Artists and creative businesses with a presence in either or both countries, can take full advantage of this convenience.  ATA Carnets are often used to affordably and efficiently Clear Customs with art for appraisal, auction, and authentication. 

Call us!

Boomerang’s Carnet Specialists offer expert customer service.  We are here to assist you 24/7, just call the Carnet HelpLine® 1-800-ATA-2900 |1-800-282-2900 or email us.   Also, if you want to ship by cargo, Boomerang has freight forwarder partners who can deliver your carnet to you, as well as handle your freight. Ask about our Boomerang Freight® Solutions service when you call or email us.

For ATA Carnet news and updates subscribe to our eNewsletter: Exportise

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